MK Dons 1 Leeds United 2: Silvestri to rescue as Leeds ride their luck

Charlie Taylor celebrates scoring Leeds' second goal. (Picture: Bruce Rollinson)
Charlie Taylor celebrates scoring Leeds' second goal. (Picture: Bruce Rollinson)
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IT was Napoleon Bonaparte who famously said: ‘I know plenty of good generals, but give me a lucky one.’

Uwe Rosler will have been well inclined to acknowledge that statement in the aftermath of Leeds’ afternoon in Buckinghamshire which should have come complete with a government health warning.

United, somehow, came away with three points to end a fraught week in relieving fashion.

For that, Leeds were indebted in equal measure to Charlie Taylor and Marco Silvestri, with the latter silencing his critics following his costly error in midweek against Ipswich by turning in a splendid display which thwarted everything MK could throw at him.

But it was the intervention of Taylor which ultimately won the game, with the buccaneering defender earning the penalty which was converted by Chris Wood after the United full-back was felled by Carl Baker on 31 minutes – and then netting a fine second from distance after 43.

As belated birthday presents go – Taylor turned 22 on Friday – it was the perfect one.

He said: “It was a huge three points going into another tough fixture at Boro and it has given everyone confidence to kick on.

“I was pleased for Marco. I thought he was fantastic and he kept us in it with some crucial saves. Everyone at the club knows Marco is a great keeper and he proved that with some great saves to keep us in the game.”

On his strike, he added: “I could not have wished for anything more really; a goal and a win. But a win is more important. I am delighted.”

United may have led 2-0 at the break, but it was after a half in which home player Robert Hall could have easily recorded a hat-trick, spurning two great chances and seeing another effort almost miraculously palmed onto the post by Silvestri.

The Italian also denied Sam Gallagher and excelled when MK laid siege after pulling one back from substitute Simon Church, despite seeing Samir Carruthers dismissed for a challenge on Stuart Dallas soon after.

Silvestri also made a fantastic save to deny Ben Reeves as Leeds, somehow survived the home onslaught.

Milton Keynes Dons: Martin; Spence (Bowditch 73), McFadzean, Kay, Lewington; Poyet, Carruthers; Baker, Hall (Reeves 58), Murphy; Gallagher (Church 58). Unused substitutes: Burns, Hodson, Aguza, Powell.

Leeds United: Silvestri; Wootton, Bamba, Cooper, Taylor, Murphy, Cook, Mowatt (Adeyemi 77), Byram (Antenucci 84), Dallas (Bellusci 94), Wood. Unused substitutes: Turnbull, Berardi, Phillips, Botaka.

Man of the match: Marco Silvestri.